You missed my chat Thursday? Sniffle.
And here are some highlights.
Kevin (Reno, NV) Are you surprised at how poorly Cal's defense has played this year given they were reportedly the strength of the team entering the season? Has Tosh Lupoi's presence been missed on the field as well as the recruiting trail?
Ted Miller (3:05 PM) Injuries have been an issue. There were extremely high hopes for DE Mustafa Jalil and it's unclear where he stands health wise. But, yes, I thought this was potentially dominating group. Is it the loss of Tosh? I think that hit is more about recruiting than on-field coaching. It's not like the Huskies D-line looked inspired at LSU. Big measuring stick for the Bears going forward at Ohio State on Saturday.
Jim (California) Thoughts on Oregon State? I realize defense played well, but I dont think the win was as impressive as some are making it out to be. Am I wrong?
Ted Miller (3:06 PM) I was very impressed and I wrote about it for this afternoon... Even if Wisconsin is not as good as last year, the Badgers are a consistent Big Ten power that plays physical football. Hard for me to believe the Beavers aren't at least a bowl team. Maybe an 8-win team, in fact. But we'll see. Games at UCLA and Arizona will take a measure of all 3 programs with impressive wins last weekend.
Rob (Portland, OR) The Ducks' chances of winning the Pac-12 WITH York/Boyett? And their chances now WITHOUT them?
Ted Miller (3:11 PM) Losing two four-year starters is a big hit. The Ducks have good depth but those are big blows in terms of Xs and Os and leadership. I had USC ahead of Oregon to start the season. I think Oregon closed the gap with the early returns on Marcus Mariota. Now the Ducks take a step back.
Shane (AZ) As of today, who do you think wins this year's Territorial Cup in Tucson: Arizona or Arizona State? (I'm a UA fan but think ASU is a little better at this point.)
Ted Miller (3:22 PM) It seems like a toss-up at present. Both teams look better than preseason expectations. We'll get a better measure of the Sun Devils at Missouri. If they win on the road, I'd give the edge to ASU. But we've got a lot of football to be played until we cross Thanksgiving.
STUCK!!! (In the office) Halliday looks to be the probable starter for WSU's game against UNLV tomorrow. What are your personal thoughts on Doc Halliday and how do you think he will fair against UNLV? Its too bad Tuel is injured again, I have a feeling he might turn into the "great that never was" type player.
Ted Miller (3:29 PM) Cougs should be OK against a team that lose to Northern Arizona... it doesn't seem like a serious injury to Tuel, and it could pay of to get Halliday some time in Leach's offense. I think he'll do fine. He seems like a gamer who plays better when things are real than in practice. With Leach, accuracy is the issue. So it would be a good night if he's around 65 percent.
Trent (portland) everybody keeps saying that the backups for Boyett, and york are solid and good to go. yet when the backups were carying the load in the second half of the last two games things looked bad. Reasons for the apparant contradiction?
Ted Miller (3:37 PM) Well, York didn't start the first two games for one. And there's a big difference between one 2nd team player and an entire 2nd team unit. The guys who are replacing York and Boyett are known quantities with plenty of experience.
Chelsea (Tucson) Of the teams looking good in the South besides USC (UA, UCLA, and, begrudgingly, ASU), whose schedule plays out to give them the best chance at a good record? Who has the worst chance?
Ted Miller (3:41 PM) arizona state misses Stanford... UCLA misses Oregon... Arizona plays them both. Advantage UCLA and ASU. ASU has a road game at Missouri this weekend, while UCLA is at home vs. Houston... advantage UCLA... I think UCLA has the best remaining schedule, one that could yield 8-9 wins.
Jack (Denver) Ted honesty the Utes loss to USU looked bad, but will a win over BYU as well as USU playing a close game against Wisconsin redeem them a little this Saturday?
Ted Miller (3:49 PM) If Utah beats BYU, it will be back on track. BYU looks like a top-25 team to me, so that would be a quality win. I think the only thing that has happened is folks who though the Utes had a shot beating out USC in the South are coming back down to earth... Utes are still a bowl team.
Snoop Dogg (The Hizzell) Who is going to tighten up the cornerback spot opposite Robey? Will this prevent the Trojans from making it to Miami if Kiffin can't find someone to adequately replace Wiley?
Ted Miller (3:51 PM) You'd think they'd eventually find an answer... I like the idea of giving S Josh Shaw a try if things continue to be an issue. But remember that Robey had a rocky start to his career and then quietly asserted himself.